It Is Not Always Fun Being a Breeder

Mar 19, 2014 by

Breeding Hedgehogs is Not Without Risks The highlights of breeding and its allure often blind individuals to the potential risks, downfalls, and expenses that can occur. The possibility of losing a pet due to breeding complications or illness is very real and the resulting bills from veterinary care can be quite sizeable. Baby fatalities are relatively common. One must have the ability to withstand birth complications and the corpses of dead, mutilated baby bodies. A breeding adventure can quickly turn to disaster without proper planning and preparation. Even with the best-laid plans, changes in market and new laws can quickly put a breeder out of business. For every animal breeder in there are hundreds of other breeders who are no longer in business.   She was only a couple months old when I got her. I had her for 5 days and that happened. I rushed her to emergency vet and they wanted 1000.00 to try to fix it. I declined and paid 150.00. So I got some medicine, including a fluid I had to put on it every hour. I stayed up all night with her then took her to my vet the next day. He had to push it back up and stitch closed. No guarantee. Then at the vet I paid another 150.21. I took her home and hoped for the best. She is still with us. It has been a...

Breeder Herd Initials

Feb 13, 2014 by

  Breeder and Rescue Herd Initials AAH Aaron’s Hedgehogs ABH Alaska Bred Hedgies ACH A.C. Hedgehogs ADH Anne Dray Hedgehogs AEC Elevage Apic Et Compagine AEH Amber’s Exotic Hedgehogs AEX Animals Exotique AHB Adorable Hedgehogs AHR Aux Herisson De Reve AKH or TPH Terrapin Hedgehogs (Formerly Alaskan Hedgehogs) ALD The Dunn Bunch ALH Alabama Hedgehogs ANC Ain’t No Creek Ranch APH April’s Hedgie Herd APH Aux Poils Herisses APO Pogzilla’s APP Amber’s Prickly Pets ARE Arkansas Exotics ATL Atlantis Hedgehogs BAH Blue Agave Exotics formerly Blue Agave Hedgehogs BBH Beach Bum Hedgehogs BBP or BPF Bobbies Pets BEE Bumble Bee Hedgies BFF Big Feather Farm BLH Bloomin’ Hedgehogs BPB BP Hedgehogs BPH Briar Patch Hedgehogs BQH Blissful Quills Hedgehogs BSH Big Sky Hedgehogs BYB Bark Yard Buddies BZH Brizzy’s Hedgies CBH Coastal Breeze Hedgehogs CCC Crespo’s Crazy Critters CCE Cuddly Critter Exotics CCH Critter Crazy Hedgehogs CCR Critter Crossing Hedgehogs formerly known as HCH High Country Hedgies CCT CC’s Treasures and Exotic Pets CDA Critter Corner Acres CDE C&D Exotics CFE Cactus Flower Exotics CHE Castle Hedgehog CHH Chaos Hedgehogs CHR Crachhiolo Hog Ranch CJH Connor and Jim’s Exotics CNH Carpe Noctem Hedgehogs COG Connie George Hedgehogs CQH Colorful Quills CQK Cutie Quills CQS Curious Quills Hedgehogs CSE Chris Sipe Exotics CSH Carolina Storm Hedgehogs CSH Cobblestone Hedgehogs CSR Hedgehog Ranch CTH Connecticut Hedgehogs CUH Cute Quills CVH Cedar Valley Hedgehogs CYP Cypress Pets...

USDA Information

Dec 3, 2013 by

We are often asked who needs to be licensed to sell hedgehogs and if they want to get licensed what is the next step. The breeding and selling of all wild and exotic animals is governed by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal Welfare Act. USDA Program Aid 1117 is entitled “Licensing and Registration Under the Animal Welfare Act – Guidelines for Dealers, Exhibitors, Transporters, and Researchers”. What you can  find this guide at  www.aphis.usda.gov/ac/ Contact Information for USDA APHIS USDA Program Aid 1117 Animal Welfare Act Information Page Application Request Form Program of Veterinary Care Information Here are a few tips that we have found useful: Always send anything to the USDA APHIS with a return receipt signature card.  This returned card might come in very handy. When communicating with any regulatory agency (IRS, USDA, etc.) it is important to have a hard copy of all information and correspondence in a file.  Record the time, date, and name of the person you spoke to on the phone. Allow two weeks for information exchange.  Request information via another route if your request has not been acknowledged. Your Program of Veterinary Care (PVC) is one of the most important things you will need for your inspection.  Have it filled out thoroughly and completely. You will need a visit by an attending veterinarian.    Many veterinarians are intimidated by the request and may not want...

Breeding & Production Potential Recommendation...

Jun 17, 2013 by

Millermeade Farms carefully selects our animal for our breeding program. When we are aware that an animal is being selected as a breeder, we will help our customers identify animals that we believe are ideal for a breeding program. Some of the things we look for when we choose our breeders we look for animals who: Come from a mother who nurses her babies well without complications or baby growth delays. Come from a large litter and from a male who has a good reproduction history. Have nice confirmation and balanced body...

Hedgehog Breeding Challenges

May 24, 2013 by

Problems Not Specific to Hedgehogs Growing up on the farm I’ve been around the challenges of breeding a variety of animals since a very young age. I remember the sadness from seeing tiny hooves of a baby donkey sticking out of a feed sack.  The baby was born breach and didn’t make it through a difficult delivery and mom required surgery to ever delivery successfully again. At the age of nine my dad spared me the sight of my first litter of rabbit babies that were born on the wire of the cage instead of the nest box and as a result died in the cold. Through my animal career I’ve learned not all male or female animals will reproduce, not all mothers instinctively know where to deliver or how to care for young.  Mothers can die at birth or shortly after birth from complications and babies can die because the mother can’t or won’t nurse them properly. As a human mom I’ve personally learned what a miracle it truly is to conceive and carry a baby successfully through birth.  Even with all the knowledge available in human medicine there is still fertility problems, miscarriages, and infant death. Starting With Good Stock Infertility in Males Male hedgehogs have a much higher successful breeding rate than females but even so there are no guarantees that all males are going to be good producers. One lesson...

Basic Breeding Information

May 24, 2013 by

Baby hedgehogs are called hoglets. Hedgehogs can produce litter sizes ranging from 1-9, with the average litter size being 3-4. The gestation or the amount of time from conception time until birth is typically 33-35 days. The average recommended breeding age is six months. Babies are born blind Babies are born with soft clear spines that turn brown in 2-3 days. Eyes open in 2-3 weeks Weaning occurs at average of 5-6 weeks but can take a little less or a little longer for babies to...

Mentoring Questions For New Breeder

May 23, 2013 by

When we mentor new breeders we encourage new breeders to learn as much as possible.  There is a lot of conflicting information on the internet and sometimes it is hard to decipher all the different opinions.  Below are some questions we encourage the breeders we mentor study, think about, and respond.  We will be sure to comment on the answers so that all points of view are represented. Some of these basic breeding questions will help new breeders to get off to a new start. Do you have a veterinarian that has seen your hedgehogs and is willing to see your hedgehog on an emergency basis? If so who and have you spoken with them? How will you decide when your hedgehogs are ready to breed? How will you decide when your hedgehogs are ready to be retired? How will you find homes for your retirees? Describe three reasons why females fail to conceive. Why would a female need Caesarean and how would you tell? Why would a female reject her babies and what should you do? Why would a female cannibalize her babies and what should you do? What should you do if your female fails to nurse or lactate and how can you tell? What are some of the most common problems with pre-weanling babies and how do you treat...

Our Breeding Program

May 23, 2013 by

Life Expectancy We do our very, very best to produce happy hedgehogs that exceed the average life expectancy.  Most breeders and enthusiast agree that the average pet life expectancy is approximately three years.  When hedgehogs were first introduced into the pet industry hedgehogs were reported to live 8-10 years.  Hedgehog owners, breeders, and enthusiasts all would love to determine what has caused an overall drastic decrease in pet longevity and how to ensure that each hedgehog lives to its full life expectancy potential. Factors Involved in Longevity Breeding and Genetics – please refer to our plan for more information on this topic. Diet – at the time of this writing no long-term scientific studies have been published related to hedgehog nutrition research. Recommendations from owners, breeders, enthusiasts and experts vary widely with little scientific evidence to nutritional hypothesis for the best captive-bred hedgehog diet. Water – this is especially important with babies but water consumption can greatly impact overall animal’s health. Temperature – it has been our experience that hedgehogs can survive at cooler temperatures but are more prone to problems.  Hedgehogs seem to thrive at 75 °F to 80 °F. Bedding- some bedding can cause impaction if eaten and respiratory stress due to phenols. Exercise – lack of exercise can lead to obesity but excessive exercise can also lead to increase in metabolism and excess free radical formation/damage. Freak accidents or illnesses. Promptness...